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For more than 30 years, Nick Knight has been reinventing photography, reshaping the image in his own way and pushing back technical and creative boundaries. The multidisciplinary artist has been able to give the world, and the world of fashion in particular, a multitude of the most striking images, and infuse an innovative current. Beyond any notion of aesthetics, he explores the multitude of human facets, disability, ageism, anthropomorphism, fanaticism, racism... His photos are singular, highly aesthetic, strange or ordinary, surreal or banal and arise as the questioning of conventional thoughts on the very notion of beautiful or ugly. From the first designs of the stylist Yamamoto to still lifes, from Kate Moss to the Queen of England, Nick Knight knew how to shake off dictates and preconceived ideas.

Nick Knight is one of the most in uent and visionary photographers of his generation. Born in 1958, he studied photography at Bournemouth and at Poole College of Art and Design. In 1982, he published Skinheads, his first photography book. At the time, Terry Jones, editor-in-chief of ID magazine, commissioned a hundred portraits from him for the magazine's fifth anniversary issue. Nick Knight then collaborated on the catalog

from 1986 by Yohji Yamamoto (famous Japanese designer and stylist). In 1993, her photograph of Linda Evangelista for the cover of British Vogue launched her notoriety.

In 2000, Knight launched, a media dedicated to live fashion imagery. The website features photography, lms and shows featuring celebrities, designers, filmmakers, writers and cultural figures to create visionary content online, exploring all facets of fashion through the image in movement, illustration, photography and writing.

The artist's objective, via this site, is to “show the entire creative process, from conception to completion”.
In 2001, Nick Knight directed Pagan Poetry, his first music video for Björk. Ten years later, it will be the video, Born this Way for Lady Gaga and Bound 2 by Kanye West. In 2016 he was commissioned to do the official portraits of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles for the Queen's 90th birthday.  Nick Knight lives with his wife and three children in London . He was awarded the Order of the British Empire in 2010 for his services to the Arts. He is an honorary professor at the University of the Arts in London and received an honorary doctorate from the same university.


Do you consider yourself to be  a fashion photographer?

Fashion has always fascinated me, ever since I was a child. That's why I made it my job. But I don't reduce my work to that of a photographer and I don't describe myself as a fashion photographer. I have an opinion on everything, and I don't see why anything should define me or characterize me. Above all, I don't want to be cataloged as a photographer, at least I don't want that anymore. What I do is not photography. Photography is clearly defined by all the criteria in connection with Richard Avedon, Robert Mapplethorpe, Eadweard Muybridge and so many others. They are all photographers, they all use the same medium. What I have been doing now, for the past 30 years, is beyond the borders and the perimeter even de ned by these photographers. I do retouching in Photoshop, I use an iPhone to take pictures, I sculpt, I paint, I make films. And what I do is not in the field of photography. Why am I saying this, and with such conviction? It is because you must understand that a new medium has appeared, which is at the beginning of its life, not at the embryonic stage but which remains very young. It is a medium made of virtual, artificial intelligence, internet. It is a world outside of photography which is emerging as a new medium. And it's very exciting, stimulating, I love it! (Laughs). Yesterday I was on a shoot. At the same time I made a 3D print of the model while setting the scene. And yet I was shooting. It's much more exciting!

Is your view of the world ironic?
No. I do not think so. I have a very passionate and very delicate view of the world. I don't like sarcasm, I don't really appreciate irony. I like pure emotions. I try to understand the true meaning of things. The world we live in is complex.


Are you true to reality?

Photography represents a world that is not ours, and as viewers, that is what we expect from it. Artists show you what's on their mind, they convey their opinion, they show you their heart, their desires, but they'll never show you what's really in front of them. You can go back to the beginnings of photography when it served as reportage and witness to history. The first pictures of battlefields were purely staged where people reenacted the story by moving bodies and props. Photography is not a medium that shows the truth, but shows an opinion. An opinion that must be considered as truth. There are no more lies than in painting. And painting is even more subjective! It is a misunderstanding. There are several stages, several levels in understanding a photograph. Watch the media and people's reactions. "It's an image retouched with Photoshop" but it's all a matter of perspective. The very way you position yourself as a photographer, the photographic lens you are going to use, will change everything. Stand above the person and you will see a large head, broad shoulders and a smaller body. Reverse the situation and it's the legs that will seem endless, as in the fashion industry, moreover, which has understood this very well. And yet it is only a camera lens. So what is real? There is an unrealistic understanding of this medium. People should free themselves from this idea that photographers present a reality. Just as they understand the reality of a comet in stop motion in front of a Spielberg film. It's fantasy. We know it. We are happy to be manipulated by the image. Cinema deals with fantasy, photography too. It is the artistic deviation that is the lie.

- Find the continuation of Nick Knight inNormal Magazine #9 -

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